Professor Dr. Rosfarizan Mohamad showing her product innovation “Medicated Wound Dressing” for chronic wounds, especially diabetic patients at the press conference held at Putra Science Park, UPM. Pic by NSTP/AIZUDDIN SAAD

KUALA LUMPUR: A team of Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) researchers has succeeded in producing a medicated wound dressing using a combination of rotten starfruit and bitter gourd extract suitable for diabetic patients.

The gel healer is capable of healing wounds in less than 48 hours or two days. Other similar healers imported from the United States and the Philippines usually take more than 48 hours to heal the wounds.

Head of research team, Professor Dr Rosfarizan Mohamad said the innovation that uses green technology is offering a cheaper medicated wound dressing at a price of 40 cents per gram compared to other products priced at RM2 a gram.

“This product is based on the use of bacterial nanocellulose produced from the locally isolated bacteria found in rotten starfruit and silver nanoparticles preparation from the bitter gourd extracts.

“This combination produces a new product known as bacterial nanocellulose silver nanoparticles composite or green composite.

The wound dressing innovation using rotten starfruits and bitter gourd extracts. Pic by NSTP/AIZUDDIN SAAD

“The green composite is a new and novel product for chronic wound healing and dressing materials targeting the diabetic patients,” she said at a press conference announcing the discovery held at Putra Science Park, UPM today.

Also present was Putra Science Park director Professor Dr. Samsilah Roslan.

Rosfarizan, who is also the Deputy Dean (Research and Graduate), Faculty of Biotechnology and Biomolecular Sciences, said this innovation demonstrates eco- and environmentally-friendly features.

"It is a simple procedure which is more economical and green. It has both antimicrobial and healing properties. It is proven and tested to be more effective on chronic and traumatic wounds, which is suitable for diabetic patients," she said.

The product can be directly applied to the wound as gel, or can be prepared as another layer / film in bandage, or in solution form as sprayer.

The innovation won a Gold medal at the International Invention, Innovation & Technology Exhibition Malaysia (ITEX) 2019 on May 4. It also received a grant from UPM amounting to RM50,000.

The research started in 2016 and expected to complete by 2021.